5 Reasons You Need To Try Aqua Cycling
Water buoyancy is assistive and supportive on your joints. This lets you get all the same benefits as training above water with less stress. Knees are extremely vulnerable to injury with normal cycling. Incorrect body, peddles, or seat positioning, can lead to excruciating pain due to knee inflammation or tearing of the tendons. There is also the possibility of suffering from chondromalacia, a dull aching pain behind the knee cap that is difficult to remedy. Cycling in the water helps prevent these kinds of injuries while also promoting healing simultaneously. If you are considering an aquatic bicycle, it is important to make sure that the seat and frontal handles are all easily adjustable such as the Fitmax Aquabike.
Cycling as well as running are both intensive calorie burners. A 180 lb cyclist can burn roughly 650 calories per hour with moderate effort. Varying the intensity of how fast and hard you pedal and incorporating concepts such as High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) can all help you burn more calories, lose weight, and achieve a flatter abdomen. Since cycling works the buttocks to help extend the hip as you pedal, it can also cut the flab and tone that area as well. Using an aquatic bike is different than normal cycling because the faster you pedal the more resistance you will experience due to the viscosity of the water. As the chart below shows, swimming and exercising in water can burn almost as many calories as running a 9 min mile for one hour without having to worry about runner’s knee or ankle sprains.
Cycling actually can strengthen all the major muscle groups of the body. Like running you employ your forward and side thigh muscles otherwise known as the quadriceps as well as your hamstrings to move, however unlike running the main driver of force will be the glutes rather than the calve muscles on the back of the lower leg. In water cycling, you will still use your core and upper body for stability but the majority of muscle building will be at the lower body. It is important to complement your aqua cycling routine with upper body training such as pushups, pull ups, and even swimming if you are able to.
When you practice aquatic cycling, your heart will beat faster than normal making it stronger. As your heart gets stronger there will be more blood vessels delivering more oxygen to your cells and using the large muscle groups in the legs makes it easy to elevate your heart rate. As your ability to transport oxygen improves you can perform daily activities with less fatigue. This helps create beds of blood vessels, called capillaries, in your muscles. Studies have suggested that your blood vessels function better and have improved capacity to react to oxygen and hormones. In fact, cardiovascular exercise such as water cycling can even reduce bad cholesterol, lower blood pressure, and even help keep insulin levels under control.
Aqua biking is a great way to reduce stress and anxiety. Put on your favorite music track and as you peddle away your body will generate various hormones such as endorphins, dopamine, and serotonin. Endorphins are chemicals that react with your brain, not only do they reduce pain but trigger a euphoric feeling otherwise known as a “runner’s high”. Dopamine is a chemical your body produces that improves motivation, productivity, and mental focus. Serotonin is another important brain chemical that regulates mood, sleep, and appetite. Cycling in the water for 30 minutes or more and you will find that your positive mood has increased as well as daily stress and anxiety has melted away in addition to all the other health benefits.